HC Deb 17 February 1959 vol 600 cc27-8W
77. Mr. Grimond

asked the Chancellor of the Exchequer what are the total amounts of outright advances to the nationalised industries over the last five years and the total amount of repayable loans.

Mr. Amory

The only Exchequer grant during this period was one of £1 million to British European Airways in 1954–55. All Exchequer advances to the nationalised industries are repayable. I will circulate in the OFFICIAL REPORT the total figures of advances from the Exchequer for each of the last five years.

Following are the figures:

Financial Year Gross(2) Net(3)
1954–55 75,250,000 67,283,754
1955–56 86,050,000 77,960,632
1956–57(4) 694,550,000 361,969,864
1957–58 949,476,642 429,732,659
1958–59(5) 886,431,625 476,291,149

(1) Under the Coal Industry Nationalisation Act, 1946, as amended, the Finance Act, 1956, as amended, and the Transport (Railway Finances) act, 1957.

(2) The National Coal Board borrow from the exchequer for working capital as well as for long-term capital. Since August 1956, sums held by the National Coal Board temporarily surplus to requirements have been used to repay outstanding advances from the Minister of Power, and the re-issues involved in these transactions account for a substantial part of the increase in the gross figures for that year.

(3) No account has been taken in these figures of payments of interest by the nationalised industries to the Exchequer.

(4) Before August 1956, the nationalised electricity, gas and transport industries did not borrow from the Exchequer.

(5) To 31st January, 1959.